Posts Tagged ‘urban ninja squadron’

below: Pink faced, orange leopard spotted blast of colour…. A mural by Christina Mazzulla.

mural of a woman dressed like a pink and orange cat, large, covers side of garage

Settlement in what is now Parkdale began before 1850.  In 1879 it was incorporated as a village and ten years later it became part of the city of Toronto.

below: Mural by Jim Bravo and Lula Lumaj from 2015, celebrating the history of Sunnyside Park.  In the early years, part of the attraction of living in Parkdale was its proximity to Lake Ontario and such features as Sunnyside Beach and Sunnyside Amusement Park.

Jim Bravo mural in Parkdale, beach scene, celebrating 100 years, Sunnyside Beach

close up of part of Jim Bravo mural in Parkdale, beach scene, celebrating 100 years, Sunnyside Beach

sign for Lees convenience store, milk jug shape in white with red letters that say open 7 days a week

below: Christmas wreath on the globe outside Parkdale Library.  This is the World Peace Monument, a globe surrounding a fountain.  It was designed by Peter Dykhuis and fabricated in copper and bronze by Heather & Little in 2005.  The metal sculpture has aged well but as we should all know by now, the city does not do water features well (i.e. I’ve never seen a fountain there; have you?)

sculpture outside Parkdale Library, a metal globe, with a Christmas wreath on it

In July 2022, City council adopted the Parkdale Main Street Historic District Plan.   It covers Queen Street  from Dufferin west to Jameson/Macdonell including this block of three buildings.  It hopes to preserve many of the two and three storey brick buildings that line Queen Street and in turn, the character of the area.

old brick buildings on Queen St West in Parkdale including home hardware store

below: Map of proposed Parkdale Main Street HDP. This map was found on a City website where you can also find other information about the project if you want.

below: Southeast corner of Queen and Dunn

 

old brick building at the corner of Dunn and Queen, with newer highrise behind

below: A happy black and white bear to greet you

painted doorway on Queen West, a black and white bear, smiling, sitting

below: And a cow in a tea cup

street scene, Parkdale, including Rustic Cosmos cafe and its sign showing a cow in a black tophat sitting in a tea cup

sign outside store, kodak image check system, best image, digital 1hour photo

sign beside a store window that says support your local farmers, with a picture of an old fashioned truck

below: Looking south on Lansdowne.  Note the car blocking the bus stop.

Lansdowne looking south to Queen, yellow building, Tiny Cafe, on the right, people getting on a TTC bus on the left side

below: Someone’s happy this morning

a store front with white metal bars, yellow door, and a large cutout of a white drink cup with domed top and a happy face on the side

below: Looking south on Noble towards Queen

vacant lot behind brick building on the northwest corner of Noble and Queen West

below: Northeast corner of Brock and Queen

large three storey brick building on the northeast corner of Brock Ave and Queen Street West, stores at street level, traffic lights at the intersection

coloured flags flying over Queen Street West

brick building storefronts on Queen West, Hanoi Restaurant, Vietnamese, beside Hamza Mosque

below: “No Justice No Development” in the window of this former store.

large square house on corner with large window, covered in white but with pink letters on window that say no justice

below: Row houses. Each house shares a gable, or a peak, with one beside.  Gables were very common in Toronto architecture, especially in the Victorian era, but in those houses each had its own gable.   As people have decorated their houses, the resulting mix of colours, materials, and textures forms its own picture. This is not unique to this street – there are many other places in Toronto where homes with shared gables (both semis and rows) have been renovated such that the two halves look very different.

line of row houses on Noble Street, all two storey, all with gables,

below: Bay and gable houses

bay and gable houses in Parkdale, some with added porch and balcony,

below: Parkdale has always had a mix of many different building styles, both commercial and residential. The Tsampa Tibetan restaurant has an octagonal turret.

Tsampa Tibetan restaurant with a turret on its roof, on the corner of Queen Street West, a pedestrian walking past

below: From rows of two storey houses to walls of glass and steel (on the other side of Dufferin, and the other side of the railway corridor).

Noble Street street scene, back of a red brick building, fence for railway corridor, and high rises on the other side of the tracks in the background.

below: Until a few years ago, this was Designer Fabrics store.  The block of buildings was built in 1881 by J.C. Mussen, a Parkdale businessman.  It was originally six storefronts.   In 2020 there was a plan to build a nine storey condo on this site.

empty building at 1360 Queen West, old brick building, retail at ground level with papered over windows,

below: Like the building beside it, this grey building at 1354-356 Queen West may be demolished to make way for a condo development.  There has been a long line of retail businesses in this space, from John Wanless’s hardware store in 1881 to Designer Fabrics (1950s to 2018).  For more information about the building, see the website of Architectural Conservancy Ontario.

looking across Queen Street West, small tree and bus shelter on the south side, older buildings on the north side including a two storey brick building with front windows papered over

small tree in front of a parkdale mural

alley with old garages behind Queen Street West, trees, winter scene but no snow

below: One person’s trash is another person’s treasure…. I had to double check just to make sure that it wasn’t real!

overflowing household trash bin with a fake arm in it, look very real

garage in alley behind Queen West, painted in shades of green with a tag throw up piece on one wall

below: The bottom right section of a black and white mural by Jimmy Chiale.

part of a mural that is black and white stylized abstract shapes

fence in an alley, part chainlink, with old wood, and old metal leaning against it

below: “Danger – Restricted Area” says the sign

orange car parked in a short alley or driveway, by a pole with a sign that says danger restricted area, backs of buildings, muddy

stencil graffiti on a reddish brown brick wall, yellow paintbrush with top in flames, with words above that say you just read this

graffiti stickers on utility pole, one is an urban ninja squadron t bonez character

sticker graffiti on a pole, all text, says very clever statement that makes you question your miserable life

below: Nothing changes

large metal door or shutters covering storefront window painted orange with words nothing changes, large graffiti tag covering the lower part

below:Another demolition – this one is on Noble, immediately north of Queen Street West.  An 8 storey condo has been proposed for this site.

danger due to demolition sign on a fence at a construction site. partially demolished building on the site along with muddy land

view of part of a demolition site, concrete half wall with decorated top, looks like carved dancing people

below: Another building, another blue and white sign, another condo. As it turns out, this is immediately behind 1354-13656 Queen West (that grey building a few images above) which means that the 9 storey condo here will front on three streets: Queen St, Brock Ave, and Abbs St..

blue and white city of toronto development notice sign on a wood fence

below: The struggle against colonialism continues

below: After a while there are just too many of these.  It can get a bit disheartening.  This sign sits in front of 1488 Queen Street West which is already empty and looking derelict at street level.  The snails pace of development doesn’t help – neglected properties are a liability.  They look horrid and contribute nothing to the neighbourhood.

blue and white development notice sign for 1488 queen west, with graffiti land back written on it

below: Scan for nonsense

paper on a wood utility pole, scan for nonsense, graffiti

With thanks to @designwallah for helping to identify the artists of some of the murals in this post.

Let me tell u …  about the graffiti that I’ve seen recently

in front of a very blue wall, a yellow bollard with three stickers on it. The phrase let me tell you is written on the three stickers

Little voices that protest ….

below: Such as “cars ruin cities” stickers.

sticker on a metal utility pole on Lansdowne, black with grey text that says cars ruin cities

Or protests of a more political nature ….

below: Doug Ford Resign.  (But you know he never will, no matter how low the Conservatives go).

pink sticker on a black metal railing, hashtag doug ford resign, mention of twitter and facebook, #dougfordresign

Of course not all graffiti is a protest against something. Sometimes it’s hard to discern any reason for it!  But often the variety and scope of eccentric and creative ideas makes finding
expression
Taking the time to produce and spread.

stickers on a metal utility pole, two are urban ninja squadron, and one has a red silhouette on concentric circles of yellow and white

stickers on a pole, one is portrait of man with black gold eyes and large fangs for teeth, the other is a cartoon like drawing of a roman soldier in orange

below: “Love is love” in a whole new way.  Can anyone pass by here and not take the time to read it?  Whether you think it’s stupid or it’s profound doesn’t really matter.  Someone thought that it was worth their time and effort to produce it.

spray painted in black, stenciled text on concrete wall beside outdoor stairwell that says love is love spelled backwards then spelled backwards again

below: Some love is quiet, hidden, in small hearts in places most people don’t see

small sticker on the back of a traffic sign that started as a hello my name is sticker, small yellow heart on itPink hearts to put a smile on your face.

a pink heart painted on a concrete barrier

pink heart stenciled onto a concrete support, with a spray paint black happy face beside it

below: So simple yet so happy.

black facial features, closed eyes and smiley mouth, graffiti on concrete railing support

below: In the “just because” category

two stickers on a pole, on top is black and white tag like drawing. one on bottom is four little characters in pink with outline and features in darker colours

small sticker of an animal drawn in black and blue, partially ripped, on a black metal litter collection box on sidewalk

below: Some references are obscure.  Pulp machete?

black drawing of a man's portrait, wearing hat, text underneath says pulp machete

below: “Revolutionary change for a dollar”?

spray painted in black, stenciled text on concrete barrier beside parking lot says revolutionary change for a dollar

below: “We are living in a simulation.”   These days simulation theorists are a digitized dime a dozen (I stole that line from a ‘Wired’ magazine article).  We can’t know that we don’t live in a simulation so no one is going to win or lose that argument, and besides, what difference would it make?  There are still people who don’t believe in evolution; maybe God’s hand is on the joystick.  We’ll never know.   Whatever your beliefs, credit to Mrbrandnu for the graffiti.

spray painted in black, stenciled text on concrete barrier beside parking lot says we are living in a simulation

I’m going to end this blog post on a hot and fiery, but mysterious, note – the next few are stencils with a red flame theme.  I’d love to know who the artist is.  Let me know if you know!

spray painted in black, stencil of spray paint can with red flames coming out of it

stencil, red flames, black paint roller

stencil, two red flames, a black silhouette of a bird in flight, on a wall of an abandoned building covered with ivy and other green overgrowth

stencil of a black rose with red flames coming off the top of it.  Petals on fire

From the West Don Lands, across Eastern, north on Broadview and then back west on Queen Street East to Parliament and the Distillery District.

below: Saved! Demolition of the old foundry building near the Distillery District.  More on this story in a previous post from almost exactly a year ago.  Also a paste up by 33wallflower33 of a well dressed woman throwing out Doug Ford’s head and paraphernalia such as beer can with “buck a beer” in it.

poster on plywood, saved the foundry, also wallflower33 graffiti of well dressed woman scattering pieces of paper that say bye bye to Doug Ford

below: Signs of celebration on the fence around what ostensibly will be Eastern Avenue Affordable Housing (i.e. We’ll wait and see…)

bottom right: “Here’s why people are rallying to protect this Toronto heritage site from demolition.  The provincial government has paused demolition of the Foundry site in the West Don Lands after an outcry in Toronto” From Toronto NOW.
bottom left: “Province starts demolition of heritage buildings in West Don Lands despite community backlash. Tearing buildings down ‘outrageous’ councillor says.” CBC News

.

below: A simple statement; a red paper heart tied to a tree.

below: Not all of it was saved… but at least they didn’t tear the whole thing down as originally planned…..

back side of old foundry building that was partially demolished

below: Ukraine symbol on a boarded up window

yellow and blue ukraine symbol painted on boarded up window of red brick building

below: Smack! Urban Ninja Squadron paste-up along with a musical sketchrat.

paper paste up urban ninja squadron graffiti on plywood

below: The house with the two green cubes is still standing.  Truth at the base.

house with two green cube shapes on point

below: A painted pillar in Underpass Park, with the pedestrian ramp up to Eastern Ave in background

painted concrete pillar in Underpass park of a woman with purple lips, city in the background - sidewalk ramp up to Queen Street, condo

below: A row of large rocks

a row of large rocks in front of a new condo, black, with other new condo, white with concrete first floor, in the background

below: The underside of the roof over the entrance to the condo is very reflective. It ‘mirrors’ the reflective ceiling of Underpass Park next door to it.

reflections of a street scene in a reflective ceiling, exterior, over the entrance to a building

below: View from, looking east over Corktown Common,  the south end of the Don River, as well as the ramp from the Gardiner Expressway to the Don Valley Parkway.

view from south side of Eastern Ave looking east over Don River, ramp from Gardiner to DVP, many tall hydro transmission towers

below: Eastern Ave and the DVP.  Looking east.

old water tower on top of newer residential development, street sign pointing to ramp from Eastern Ave to Don Valley parkway northbound

car dealership at Eastern Ave and Don Valley Parkway

below: Garfield the Cat just lying around

on a white wall, a painting of Garfield the cat lying down with sunglasses and purple polka dot shorts on

below: Northeast corner of Broadview and Eastern.

a small hyundai dealership, now empty, at the end of a row of empty and boarded up houses on Broadview

below: A row of old houses on Broadview still stand empty.  It’s been years now since anyone has lived in them.

row of old brick rowhouses that have been empty for a while, construction fence in the front

below: Just a bit north, at Queen Street East, another boarded up building.  But this one is now in the middle of an active construction site.

back of an empty building on Queen East, construction site, large green dumpster

below: In an alley behind Queen Street East.

text throw up street art on a garage door, with construction site behind

below: A new view of Queen Street East has been opened up with the demolition of some of the buildings on the south side.

view northwest

below: Northeast corner of Broadview and Queen East, once the home of Dangerous Dan’s.

northeast corner of Queen and Broadview, three storey brick building, Pizza Nova on the corner,

below: Danger due to hole.  On Queen East.  The pyramid shaped roof is part of the Broadview Hotel at Queen and Broadview.

looking east on Queen East towards Broadview and Broadview Hotel, construction on the south side

below: More danger….  watch out for spooky skeletons!

danger due to sign that has been altered to say danger due to spooky skeletons

below: Riverside Common, a new public space on Queen Street East.

Riverside common, a new public space on Queen East

below: Looking back across the Don River from the bridge at Queen Street East.

view across Don River in early spring, just north of Queen Street

below: Passing southbound under Queen Street East.

looking north from bridge on Queen East over the Don River, train car on tracks, cyclists on bike path, river, and traffic on DVP

below: Looking north up Lower Bayview from Queen Street East

looking north up Lower Bayview from Queen Street bridge, 3 black cars, new condo being built, train tracks

below: From almost the same vantage point as the photo above, but looking more west than north.

looking northwest from Queen East bridge over the Don River, view of old brick brewery by River Street (now residences), and newer highrises beyond

below: An Uber5000 yellow birdie on the wall of the Toronto Humane Society at Queen and River.

an uber 5000 yellow birdie on a mural

2 posters on a utility pole, Lost

a painting of the madonna, Mary, in blue robes, with gold halo, and red heart in chest gold light rays coming from red heart, painting on a wall

below: Painting of two fencers where the red wine seems to be winning.

mural of two fencers, one with a glass of red wine in their hand

below: Where Eastern Avenue meets Front Street, looking west towards downtown.   The old brick building is now Toronto Police Services  Division 51 headquaters.  In a previous phase of its life it was Consumers Gas Station A, designed by Bond & Smith and built in 1898.   Beyond Parliament Street and in the background is the blue Globe and Mail building.

where Eastern Ave meets Front Street, old historic brick building with new glass commercial building behind

below: The Porsche dealership on the northwest corner of Front and Parliament is now empty.

Now empty, the porsche dealership at Parliament and Front, large shiny silver curved surface on upper levels, window with red coverings on the ground floor.

below: The southwest corner of Front and Parliament is entirely surrounded by plywood hoardings.

plywood hoardings covering the southwest corner of Front Street and Parliament Street, some posters on the plywood, skyline in the background

below: Another 33wallflower33 paste-up. This time she’s pinning Putin’s head to the ground.

33wallflower33 pasteup on plywood, woman in vintage clothing with umbrella stick holding Putin's head to the ground

below: And back to the Distillery District – and the new construction that is taking place at Front and Trinity, just north of the historic buildings.

construction near the distillery district

Toronto is a city of surprises; a city of variety.  If you are bored with one street, just walk another block or turn at the next intersection and chances are you’ll encounter something different.  The scenery will change.  For instance, on Dundas West you leave the downtown core just after University Ave., walk past OCADU, the Art Gallery of Ontario and Grange Park… next, through a section of Chinatown at Spadina and then immediately into the Kensington Market area.   Just south of Kensington is the redevelopment of Alexandra Park….  and you’ve only walked a few blocks.

traffic signs and pedestrian crossing signs on Dundas with downtown highrise in the background and Ocadu banner on pole

below: The newly renovated OCADU annex building on the southeast corner of Dundas and McCaul is now called the Rosalie Sharp Pavilion.  The curve of the roof contrasts nicely with the sharp edges of the neighbouring buildings

Rosalie Sharp pavilion on the southeast corner of Dundas and McCaul, shiny metal facade on the building,

below: The northeast corner of Dundas and McCaul is yet another hole in the ground.  The Art Gallery of Ontario and Rosalie Sharp Pavilion are in the background.  I am beginning to feel like a broken record player when I mention yet another condo construction site (tangent – is there a 21st century equivalent to “broken record player”?).

construction site, orange plastic, hole in the ground, St. Patricks church on right, AGO in the background, at Dundas and McCaul, northeast corner

below: The demolition of the buildings on Dundas West opens up new views of St. Patricks RC Church.

on Dundas West, just east of McCaul, hoardings around a construction site with St. Patricks RC Church behind

below: Around the corner from St. Patricks, is Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church and its bilingual signage and beautiful red door.

entrance doorway to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, red wood door, signs on right side in English, signs on left side in Chinese

below: Krispy Kreme (yes, they still exist!) and Jimmys Coffee on McCaul in almost identical buildings.  Like twins but with a dash of their own personality.

old buildings on McCaul street, two remaining rowhouses, three storeys, one is Krispy Kreme at street level, the other is a Jimmys Coffee. A larger squarer brick building on the right, also three storeys

below: Thing 1 and Thing 2 running down the alley

mural with Thing 1 and Thing 2 from Sr. Suess Cat in the Hat book

below: …but not this alley.   That’s a lot of stairs!

Toronto downtown alley backs of houses, exterior stairs up to third floor, fences, brick, concrete,

below: Each building has it’s own character from years of changes and modifications as people come and go.  They may not be good looking but they are often unique – someone’s little piece of the city.

back of houses in alley, tree, fence,

below: Front yard patio

loveseat and armshair outside on grey mat, door to building is double red door, storefront,

below: Critters in the window

three stuffie toys in the middle window of a bay window set in a beige stucco house, behind a wood fence, rusty metal roof on bay window

below:  An old TTC streetcar loses its load.  By the looks of it, this image will disappear once the ivy comes back to life in a few weeks.

painting on concrete wall of a TTC street car leaning over and people falling out

Super star written on the window of a hair salon in china town, large red Chinese letters too, reflection in the window

below: Put together by the ‘Long Time No See Photo Project’, “Chinatown, the Best” is a collection of portraits that highlights seniors in the Chinatown area along with their thoughts and opinions on what makes Chinatown great.

Chinatown poster series on residents, in windows and door on Dundas

below: The posters are on display over eight locations on Spadina and Dundas West.

Chinatown poster series on residents, in windows and door on Dundas

Left to right:
1. Come and work out in Chinatown.
2. Chinatown is my looking glass. Newcomers come thru finding support to enter Canada & I go back thru to understand where my ancestors and I come from. Keep Chinatown strong!
3. Chinatown is my ancestral village. In 1892 Great-Grandfather Charlie Yep laid down family roots in Montreal – but the early years of international racism gave way to self-loathing Kungfu? Chinesey food? Aiiyah!! Standing defiant in a martial arts pose is a testimony to overcoming my denial. I am Chinese-Quebecois Canadian. Au bout!
4. For making Chinatown the Best, Lily draws on her spiritual energy medicine knowledge to develop a healing relationship with the living landscape and its inhabitants to foster the restoration of the area’s sluggish energetic anatomy and amplify its vibrational health and wholeness.
5. deu say lin yeung im ah im duck!

below:  In another Chinatown window is this display – pictures of food with four old black and white pictures.

picture in window in Chinatown, collage of food photos and old black and white photos. One black and white is old Shanghai Bund

below: The picture on the far right depicts Shanghai Bund and river waterfront so it is possible that the other photos are also of Shanghai?  Or at least cities in China?

close up of a picture of sliced meat on a platter, as well as two old black and white photos. Photo on right is Shanghai Bund with boats docked along the river shore.

below: Another window with pictures – this time The Kensary, a cannabis store in Kensington.

window of the Kensary cannabis store in Kensington, full of Toronto landmarks

below: A close up of part of the window showing Casa Loma, Roy Thomson Hall, Hughs Room, the El Mocambo, the Silver Dollar, Massey Hall, and gabled Victorian era houses

close up of picture in window of The Kensary, Toronto landmarks, Casa Loma, Roy Thomson Hall,

below: Hoardings on Spadina where a skeleton reaches out for passers-by.

man on sidewalk on Spadina, walking past hoardings with graffiti and street art and adverts, one mural is a large skull with outreached bony arms,

below: Kensington view of the CN Tower

CN Tower in background, large hydro wood structure in foreground, view from Kensington

below: Facilities at Bellevue Park – more than just “all gender”

a blue and yellow porta potty covered in macabre street art, in bellevue park

in blues, mural by elicser of an older man with white beard, a hook for a hand, smoking a pipe, wearing a cap

a dead end in an alley where all the fences and gates are covered with murals, a large tree, the backs of two storey houses in different materials and colours, brick, wood,

below: Wanted poster for Putin the war criminal

two stencils on hoardings, one is a pink woman's head and the other is a wanted poster for putin, war criminal, Russian leader for his invasion of ukraine

street art on hoardings with word war, black hands and red flames, yellow building tower,

below: There’s at least one Maple Leafs fan left!

sticker on a pole, a stick figure person with a happy face and a realistic blue Maple leafs hockey jersey

bke parked at bicycle stand with graffiti slaps on it, across street from fruit and vegetable market with green walls and red and white striped awning, Kensington market area of Toronto

poster graffiti of a white skull on black background, large red border, on a pole, with alley street art in the background

a woman taking pictures of street art in an alley

below: Jumblefacefoto collages

two large jumblefacefoto collages on walls of empty storefront, open door, with large sign saying coming soon, someone has written in black marker, large letters, freedom in back

in an alley, a door painted black, part of a callligraphy mural with black writing on magenta and orange background

below: Alexandra Park redevelopment progresses. Dundas West is the northern edge of the 16 acre site owned by TCHC (Toronto Community Housing Corp). Most of the original units that were built in the 1960s are now gone.

orange digger working behind a fence, beside older brick apartment building, sign on fence that says you are not your mistakes.

on a pole, twp graffiti slaps, on top is an intricate line drawing of flowers and on the bottom is a bruha, intergalactic in many colours

below: Apparently it’s okay to be white. Actually it’s okay to be brown, or black, or any shade in between too.

on the back of street traffic signs, two slaps. On top is one with words It's okay to be white, and on the bottom a small face with a round surprised mouth

below: Anarchist piano lessons?

poster on hoardings that says Anarchist piano lessons

below: “They say death takes you to a better place but I doubt it”  Me?  I’m in no hurry to find out.

square slap graffiti, small, with text crammed into it that says They say death takes you to a better place but I doubt it

small black and white sticker of a screaming face, on a pole with street art, beside a wood utility pole with lots of orange paint

on a wooden fence, a sign that says warning CCTV cameras, surveillance, you are being watched

… and Graffiti Alley

stencil graffiti, words that say met u in toronto written twice in a circle around a happy face, yellow on black, sprayed on a brick wall in Graffiti Alley

in Graffiti Alley, on a door, a big pink heart with love written in cursive through the middle of it

below: Northeast corner of Spadina and Queen West

northeast corner of Spadina and Queen in a snow flurry,

early morning, storefronts on Queen West, fruit market, empty store, lots of cardboard boxes on sidewalk waiting for trash pickup

below: Mannequins on orange

mannequins in Joe Fresh window, orange background, kids clothes

sidewalk scene on Queen West, bus shelter with Queen West advert, green P parking sign, some stores,

below: Queen Street westbound approaching Bathurst

TTC streetcar westbound on Queen West approaching Bathurst, snow falling, other cars waiting for red light,

below: It’s always nice to see that there’s at least one Lovebot still hanging out in Graffiti Alley.

in Graffiti Alley, a lovebot pasteup up hgh, love bot and a bunch of balloons

below: On the door, a jumblefacefoto collage

jumblefacefoto collage paper pasteup on door in graffiti alley in the middle of a text throw up street art

below: Reach out and touch someone

Bell phone booth covered with stickers, plus a fake bony hand holding onto the receiver, in Graffiti Alley

below: Open your eyes

brick wall with paper pasteup graffiti, open your eyes, a jumblefacefoto

below: Are you smiling?  Are you happy?

old KFC building, empty, with graffiti painted on wood leaning against the building, black letters on white that say In a passive society smiles are not the faces of happy people R "2022"

TTC streetcar at Queen and Spadina, in the snow

an older couple walking on sidewalk on Queen West waiting for greenlight at Bathurst by taccorito restaurant

below: Southeast corner, Queen & Niagara

early morning, yellow lights on in plant store on Queen West, a woman walking past,

below: Same intersection slightly later in the morning and from a slightly different angle

people on the sidewalk at queen west and niagara, traffic lights, woman pushing stroller, Japanese mural in the background, chive plant store in the foreground

two storefronts in old brick building, Queen West, Park Avenue Cleaners and Shanti Baba

photograph on exterior of store, group of people standing together, number 789 Queen West is next door

t bonez urban ninja squadron paste up of him in yoga pose

mural of a naked upper body with arms up and flowers around the head with words turn off your mind

below: Windigo Army piece

street art painting of an indigenous man with long black braid, wrapped in a white and black blanket, with yellow and red aura around him

below: A little orange character pasted to a pole; the work of kode_dipz aka Kyara Cabrera Fong

kode 905 slap graffiti little orange character with green face and tummy, on a pole

below: Because of the construction of a new condo at Richmond and Augusta there has been scaffolding in a section of Graffiti Alley. The other day some of it was being dismantled. This woman is more visible now but some of the bars remain.

mural of a woman with a cloth covering her head, behind scaffolding bar,

below: Life©️ one eyed red daisy supersized

black and orange traffic pylons beside the entrance to Graffiti Alley with a red one eyed daisy painting by life co beside it, then a row of paintings on hoardings

graffiti and street art on plywood hoardings that got switched around

4 faces found in different pieces of street art, all cartoonish, including a one eyed pink monster with oozing body,

below: Part of UBER5000’s Toronto mural.

large uber5000 Toronto mural in Graffiti alley, lower portion of it, behind chainlink fence

below: By luvs – a woman and her dog, with duplicate vision

part of a mural by luvs of a woman's head and a bulldog beside her, duplicate eyes and sunglasses that she's looking over, on a garage door in rush lane

two women walking their dogs in a snow storm on Spadina

from inside, a man walks past window of Le Gourmand bakery cafe on Spadina

below: A properly worn mask…..

window of flashback vintage, a mannequin in brown jacket and blue dress, mask needed sign on door

a collection of dolls in a store window with yellow metal grille in front

What is creepier?  Dolls or mannequins?

two images of mannequins in a window, one in pink and the other in red with red hair, both with large bows in their hair

below: Poetaia wants to know what you’re up to, wink, wink.

sticker graffiti on a wood utility pole that says What are your plans for the weekend?

below: Peeling paper makes the gold words difficult to read

grid of painted paper on top of street art, peeling at edges

below: There’s a yellow eye and possibly a blue one too?

paper collage face with yellow eye,slightly peeling at the edges

two mailboxes on a black door, 555 is salmon colour and 557 is black

two stickers on a metal pole on the topis a picture of a man's head with word think and on bottom is t bonez with finger over mouth as in saying shhh shush

small sticker graffiti on pole

small black and white sticker graffiti on pole, picture of man in a mask holding shoulders of a woman

mannequin in a window wearing a shiny yellow sai and holding a heart shaped evening purse with shiny beads on it

 The alley and parking lot behind the south side of Gerrard Street between Rhodes Avenue and Craven Road has a lot of street art.  Most of it was described back in November 2015 in a post titled:
Udlaakut, good morning (Inuit for good morning).

below: Mural by Timmy Drift aka Tim Schjins

mural of many faces with big mouths and white teeth

murals on the back of businesses on Gerrard street, beside a snowy parking lot,

below: A newer painting is this Alley Cats mural which is over 14′ high and is the work of Swizzle Studios (aka Rob Elliott and Andrew Horne)

large mural in a Little India alley, three white cats looking up at a yellow bird on a ledge

below: Jim Bravo and Ema Ciobanico (2020) painted murals with Little India Bazaar themes over two buildings – one on the NE corner of Gerrard and Ashdale and the other across Gerrard on the SE corner.

at the intersection of Gerrard and Ashdale, two buildings across the street from each other, both with Little India murals by Jim Bravo

below: On the northeast corner of Gerrard and Ashdale is the west wall of Kohinoor Foods – people with balloons, flags, and lotus flowers.

mural by Jim Bravo on the wall of Kohinoor Foods on Gerrard East

mural by Jim Bravo on Ashdale in Little India with the word Bazaar (as in Little India Bazaar), flowers and people holding balloons

mural by Jim Bravo on Ashdale in Little India with the word Bazaar (as in Little India Bazaar), flowers and people holding balloons

below: Visual noise and friends, slaps in an alley.

stickers and pasteups on a white wall. Urban ninja squadron t bonez on one knee with a large missle launcher on one shoulder

below: I have blogged about this mural before – Four-D by Alexa Hatanaka and Patrick Thompson at Gerrard and Woodfield, 2013.

below: An elephant above the vape shop

mural of an elephant on the upper level of a store

below: Mr. Monopoly tries to run away with the loot (by kransky)

street traffic, or Bell, box with a running Mr. Monopoly

below: Another mural!  This one was painted by Catherine Cachia

little india bia sponsored mural on the side of a building

below: Two of a series of different coloured ‘banners’ that have cut out images in them.

green and pink banners in Little India

below: Buddha seems to be happy to hang around here.

buddah statue outside a store window

metal chairs and tables stacked against storefronts on sidewalk in Little India

painted planters on the sidewalk on Gerrard St., in the winter with some snow

below: “We’re all in this together”  Still Covid days.

door at 1299, with signs in the window, We're all in this together

signs in the window of a door of a store in Little India

looking through the clear side of a bus shelter at Coxwell Ave., looking west along Gerrard St.

below: Northeast corner of Coxwell and Gerrard/Eastwood

pink two storey building on the northeast corner of Coxwell and Eastwood, with construction in front, Coffee Time on the lower level is closed and windows papered over

below: Halal Meat Shop at Glenside

Halal Meat store on Gerrard

below: Lazy Daisy’s Cafe has been temporarily closed since Christmas while they “transform”.

doorway to Lazy Daisy coffee shop, closed with sign on door

below: Mural at the Black Pony (formerly the Flying Pony)

exterior of Flying Pony Cafe, with snow covered patio furniture and mural that says You're Here

gold and cololurful little statues in a store window

red saris and male clothing with gold and beads decorating it

looking in the front window of a bead store

in a window, a green, red and white flag with beaded shapes hanging in front

old sign at 1301 Gerrard East, sidewalk in winter,

yellow sign on gate of Buddhist temple that says sorry we're closed until further notice

below: Looking west along Gerrard at Greenwood.

people sitting in bus shelter, winter, at corner of Gerrard East and Greenwood, looking west along Gerrard, Daisy Mary and Pizza Pizza as well

below: It’s Okay to forgive yourself, today, tomorrow, and every day after that

poster graffiti that says It's okay to forgive yourself, a white cloud is giving a pink blob a big hug and they are both sitting on top of a globe of the earth

below: A greeting from a bright and cheerful Prideosaur

sticker of a blue dinosaur with rainbow horns, striped tail and rainbow spots on its back, prideosaur

below: Sign at 4422 says “Get Out of Here”

poster graffiti, black and white drawing

below: Hoardings on Dundas West with bruho, urban ninja, sketchrat, life in the streets, las mujeres vampiro, and looney spoons.

below:  Eyes in collages large size pasteups at Trinity Bellwoods Park

2 green sheds at Trinty Bellwoods Park, with graffiti on them, a man walking past pushing a stroller

below: Names on a pole, left behind in Graffiti Alley by Max, Lily, James, Keira, Leah, The Gamer, and others (a class project?)

stickers on a pole, different people's names

below: Look.  Look at my cat.

poster on a concrete pole - picture of a cat's head and face with words, look, look at my cat

below: So many questions weighing heavy.

graffiti alley stickers including urban ninja squadron, t bonez on one knee while carrying a large yellow cube on his back. cube has white question mark on each face

below: Found behind bars

sticker of an abstracted man's face on glass behind metal grille

below: Hello! Happy to see you

black line drawing graffiti on red and white hello sticker, on a pole beside a black marker on white paint happy face

below: Devilish skateboarder

sticker of a togo wearing, sandal wearing, many with devil horns, on a skateboard

below: A plethora of stickers

many stickers on the back of a Toronto street sign

below: Stay safe!

sticker that says stay safe on a panel for button for pedestrian crossing

below: A face only a mother could love… maybe… He’s got one smiley face ear and another not so happy ear.

a woman walks past a box with graffiti on it including two stickers, an ugly man's face and a t bonez tropical shirt

below: ring around the pole by the same artist, OzoHOH? 0zohok?

stickers on a metal ring around a wood utility pole

below: zonr and more visual noise

stickers on a pole, zonr, urban ninja squadron in red

below: words, maybe girl dutch with something intense and ending with half woman.

poster graffiti on a wood pole, cursive writing, many words, black on white

below: I love you says a pink monkey

stickers on poles in graffiti alley

below: Now you know what’s in the Ninth Circle of Hell. In Dante’s “Inferno” the Ninth Circle was a frozen lake, a place devoid of love and warmth where Satan resided. The Ninth was also the innermost circle, reserved for those who have committed the worst sins which in Dante’s view were treachery and betrayal. Souls are frozen in the lake. Those whose treachery wasn’t quite so bad were frozen with their heads above the ice. Others were buried deeper. Lucifer, the archangel who betrayed God, is trapped waist-deep in the ice.

poster on a utility pole, lots of words with first line being climate change is the ninth circle of hell

below: A twist on blue Grumpy Care Bear – is he thinking about Climate Change?!

city crew sticker on a pole, also a blue care bear sticker, painted wall behind the pole

below: You’re welcome!

pink bordered sticker with three cheering women, words say thanks

I first posted pictures of the pasteups and posters at Charlotte and Adelaide back in September shortly after they first appeared.  I walked past them the other day.  There are a few that I forgot the first time and a few that are new.   Being street art, they have been subject to the sufferance and whims of others –  some comments are added, marks are made.

These are the photos that I took recently:

paper pasteups at Charlotte and Adelaide, large poster for las mujeres vampiros, a woman in a red dress holding a pig

words written over paper pasteups

paper pasteups, a grouping of ten or eleven photos including two large mouths, a woman with blond hair, a woman with blue hair, and others

jumbleface collage photos pasteups over white tag which covered previous paste ups

street art paper poster pasteups, photograph, also abstract faces

wall of paper poster pasteups, with a jumbleface foto collage of eyes

paper pasteups, large, one with woman in pink blouse and pink flowers tied into her hair. the other is a very abstract face in blues and reds and yellows

metal pole with graffiti stickers on them

stickers on metal pole, sketchrat, urban ninja squadron,

posters on a wall, urban ninja squadron, visual noise, and others

sticker soup life with red one eyed daisies, paper poster pasteups

two orange figures on a wall in front of other posters and written graffiti

blue and white city of toronto notice of development sign, on which someone has put a sticker with Mr. Monopoly and the words I have seen the future and I can't afford it

Covering the exterior walls of a small empty building on the corner of Charlotte and Adelaide West is a collection of images.  This project, Paste Platz, is the work of Jeremy Lynch.  He asked some instagram users (artists, graffiti artists, photographers, etc ) if they wanted to contribute images.  He then printed pictures the pictures and created the scene you see below.   I haven’t tried to identify which pieces were provided by which artist; instead, I have made a list of the contributors at the bottom of this post along with a link to their instagram pages.  If you have been following this blog, you will recognize some of the street art.  But a lot of it should be new!

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, photo of town of Hope BC sign that says Experience hope, with words As a person with mental illness, I find this ironic

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, monkeys with cans

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, monkeys with cans, jumbleface with blue eyes and blob face

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, woman with large buns of hair at ears, with pink roses there too, also colourful abstract faces

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, with blue and white city of Toronto development notice sign, black graffiti says luxury ghettoes

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, City Kitty design in skull

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, three large pictures in black and white of women

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, 2 steel poles in front covered with stickers, wall behind with large paper posters pasted on

old colour poster of a woman holding a little pig running away from a policeman who has left his car behind, text added that says I sent you that beautiful meme but you never replied (man is talking)

paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, stickers on a beam in front of larger posters

visual noise and urban ninja squadron, paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall

peace and humpiness R I P in memory of shock G

Full disclosure – some of my pictures from my recent “Little Red Trike” series were included. I brought it with me for a little photoshoot.

llittle red trike in front of a series of photos that feature the trike, paste platz in downtown Toronto, a large paste up display

red trike at paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall, with words Don't let me fade away

red trike in front paste platz, wheatpaste papers on a wall

This site was revisited, and more photos taken, late in November: paste platz revisited

Contributors

Alan Williamson

Alina Chirila

Anna

Anne Milne (aka Colouring Book)

Baska

Bill_L47

Bruho

City Kitty

crkshnk

Eric Hoyles

Garth Dyke

Jeremy Lynch

Kendall

La Vie Sauvage

Luciano Costa

Merlin Boissonneault

Rako Duarte

rudy

sketchrat

tsmoke

Urban Ninja Squadron

and my instagram page too

in Kensington

sign on sidewalk made with pink fabric covered with yellow and white flowers, a big white circle in the middle with hi written in large yellow letters

Some places never change, at least not in the big ways. Although little things pop up only to be replaced by other tidbits, Kensington still looks like it has for a while now. I can’t say forever! Because nothing lasts forever.
In fact, there is a small photo exhibit on hoardings in the neighbourhood that features old pictures and there are definitely similarities to be found!

hoardings with an exhibit of old black and white photos of kensington

below: On the left, from 1940 a photo of a shop at Denison and Dundas West from the Jewish Archives.

two old black and white photos of the kensington neighbourhood, vintage

below: This is an enlargement of the the black and white photo on the right from the picture above. It is the Augusta Fruit Market and it was taken in 1961 by Vincenzo Pietropaolo

black and white photo from 1961 of Augusta Fruit market

below: Sixty years later the same building sits on the same corner only now it’s the Oxford Fruit Market. It even has the same green roofline and what looks to be the same hydro pole!

the Oxford Fruit Market, painted blue, on the corner of Augusta

below: An iconic Kensington sight gets a new paint job.

woman wearing an orange turban-like hat is painting a car in many bright colours, the car is full of plants growing inside it

below: Fix your hearts or die.

graffiti sign on a pole, covering an add for 35 mm cameras for sale, words that say fix your hearts or die

below: A mural on the side wall of Perolas, by Jeannie Priscila aka Dajenesis

two people walking past a mural of a South American woman on Perolas Supermarket exterior  wall

below: Hands outstretched to passers-by

a woman in a coral coloured dress walks past a mural of an old woman with her hands outstretched, asking for something, a red and white shawl over her head

below: Hate has no home here, plus something that started with “Behind stained steamy glass, we’ll (and then your imagination can take over!)

signs on a wood utility pole in front of a painting on a brick wall of a cup of coffee.  A poster with words Hate has no home here.  An ad for a store that is partially obscured by the pole, and a fake street sign that starts with Behind Stained steamy glass, we'll... and the rest is blocked by many stickers

below: free Toronto Caribbean newspapers

below: Ricas Tortas, Elotes y Esquites are fading away

below: Eyes eyes and more by Jeremy

below: Walking past temptation – churros, empanadas, slushies and Birra Catrina

a couple carry their shopping in bags as they walk on sidewalk, walking past

below: Pour me into frequency – in triplicate

3 large graffiti posters in an alley, covering other street art, each with an anatomically correct heart in different colours (red, green and blue), and the words pour me into frequency

below: This little sock monkey not only shows his rainbow colours but also shows his support for the COVID-19 vaccine!

a sock monkey sits in a store window, wearing a rainbow flag scarf and a sticker that says I got my covid-19 vaccine

below: Uber5000 – yellow birdies in a helicopter on top and dogs playing cards on the bottom. Perhaps that yellow birdie on the ladder is dropping in on the card game?

below: A view down the alley towards more murals – a very big multicoloured chicken beside a face

below: A Rowell Soller close up

Close up of a face, eyes closed, mural by Rodwell Soller

below: A brighter than blood red beak looks rather creepy on this enormous chicken by Phillip Saunders

mural of a chicken's head and beak

below: Walking past one of the many patios now open in Kensington

A man with long hair and wearing a cowboy hat walks past a patio in Kensington

below: Carlos House of Spice

Carlos House of Spice in Kensington, with an alley beside it, murals on the walls in the alley, incense for sale in front,

3 pedestrians walking on a sidewalk, walking past a man struggling with a large package on his bike

below: Saved by the youth Can you imagine it? Beside Snacks Mexican style where Aguas Frescas (Jamaica, watermelon and mango) are $5. Also on the menu, Pina Coladas, as well as Elote, and Esquites (corn dishes I think)

black letters spray painted on white tile wall, says saved by youth can you imagine it?  wall is beside a window of a coffee shop with words and numbers listing the prices of drinks, aguas frescas

below: a silver poser bunny

silver poser bunny on pink background

a large flag draped around a white picket fence, flag is yellow with a big happy face on it

below: Dundas West near Augusta

stores and signs on Dundas West near Augusta.  Chao Chow Association of Ontario, Swiftronics, Royal Denture, and others, some people walking on the sidewalk too

below: Walking to Noras for a shawarma or a kabob?

below: Hoardings on Dundas West surrounding Alexandria Park redevelopment.

a woman on a bicycle rides past hoardings around Alexandria Park redevelopment, with a mural on it by Javid Jah and Danile Deluxe

below: A large mural that was a collaboration between Phillip Saunders and Luvs

large mural of a mans face in Kensington

below: Graffiti slaps, stickers, and paste-ups – Feelings Boi, Urban Ninja Squadron, TRP 613,

below: T-bonez in black and white

sticker of t bonez urban ninja squadron in black and white

below: A shiny red skateboarder zooms past a snake with its tongue stuck out

graffiti slap of a bright shiny red skateboarder on the move

below: stickers on boxes

below: Stickers on poles

graffiti stickers on poles in Kensington

below: A wise owl with curly hair and glasses plays the accordion

below: You are not your mistakes plus a summer time poem

on brown paper, a message that says You are not your mistakes, beside a red Tridel sign.  on the latter, someone has written a poem in sharpie

The words are very small on the red sign; this is what they say.

Summer Time
Sundress
I feel India in my bones
I can smell sunlight
I can feel the high time
bless me
God bless me, goddess of forbidden love
I am she
I ___ one white candle
Maintain purity